Is Alcohol or Drug Use a Contributing Factor to the Impairment?

If you have a debilitating physical problem or a psychological/mental problem and suffer from alcoholism or drug addiction, you may be qualify for Social Security disability. However, if the Social Security Administration thinks your disability will improve if you stop drinking or taking drugs, your claim may be denied. In other words, the SSA denies claims from people with addiction issues if their board physicians consider an addiction is contributing significantly to the mental or physical condition.


Alcohol Impairment Factor

What is the SSA’s Drug and Alcohol Abuse Determination?


If you file a Social Security disability claim for recurring seizures and SSA accesses records showing you have been treated for substance abuse, they will begin investigating whether your seizures are the result of your addiction or another medical disorder. Seizure conditions attributed to alcoholism or drug addiction will therefore not qualify as a debilitating condition listed in the SSA Blue Book.


Upon receiving a disability application from someone with a physical problem or mental problem and who has a verifiable alcoholism or drug addiction disorder, physicians working for SSA’s disability determination services will review the application and write their opinion regarding whether an addiction is responsible for the condition. If they are denied, applicants can file an appeal. The judge at an appeal hearing involving a DDS denial is not required to adhere to the opinion of the physician who wrote the opinion. In this case, appeal judges can base their decision on DAA rules and regulations.


Is It More Difficult to Qualify for Social Security Disability When Applicants Suffer a Psychological Disorder?


If you have an addiction and file for disability because you are extremely depressed or anxious, you will likely be denied on the basis that your drug or alcohol use is causing your emotional/psychiatric issues. Additionally, people with a past history of substance abuse who have not used drugs or alcohol for some time should review their personal medical records before filing an SSD claim. In some cases, physicians may indicate an applicant is “suspected of using” addictive substances in their notes to the SSA.


If you want to apply for social security disability and are dealing with a substance abuse disorder, avoid denials, delays and time-consuming appeals by contacting London Eligibility today.